What is 5G technology?


We are all quite used to the average phones of this day and age that operate on 4G; however, 5G is the 5th generation of wireless network technology which is potentially looking to revolutionize the way we communicate in terms of speed, accuracy, and clarity.

The main theme of 5G boils down to speed. If you look at where we started from in the 1980s from 1G which ushered in an era of connectivity unparalleled to anything available to humans at that time, you start to see the pattern of innovation and improvement that led to 5G.

5G is a unified and competent air interface, which will allow larger amounts of data to be carried between 5G enabled devices and machines with low latency and a speed of up to 10 gigabits per second, which easily blows 4G out of the water with its 100 Megabits per second maximum real-world download speeds.

5G is based on OFDM (Orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing), a method of modulating a digital signal across several different channels to reduce interference. 5G also uses wider bandwidth technologies such as sub-6 GHz and mm Wave, which in layman’s terms means that you will be able to achieve a higher data transfer rate which in turn leads to shorter download times.

Fast delivery, better mobile broadband services, and larger data transfers are not the only upsides with 5G when compared to 4G, 5G has the ability to expand into new service areas such as mission-critical communications and connecting the massive IoT (Internet of things).

How is 5G better than 4G?

  • 5G is remarkably faster than 4G
  • 5G has a much higher size capacity compared to that of 4G
  • 5G notably lowers latency compared to that of 4G
  • 5G can natively support all spectrum types (licensed, shared, unlicensed)
  • 5G can also support all times of bands (low, mid, high)

As far as the origin of 5G goes, no one company was responsible for its creation, it was rather a joint effort from the technology community. 5G networks are predicted to have more than 1.7 billion subscribers worldwide by 2025, according to the GSM Association. This can be proven by the number of devices, such as mobile phones, that support 5G being manufactured on a large scale by industry-leading companies such as Apple and Samsung.

In their latest offering of the much-anticipated yearly ‘I Phone’ release, Apple has come out with phones that vary in price based on their specs, but one thing they all have in common is that they all share 5G connectivity. Samsung has also followed suite and has mass produced 5G ready phones ready to be sold to the public. Considering the fact that both Apple and Samsung jointly share around 56% of the worldwide market share of mobile phones, it cannot be taken as an understatement on how massive 5G really is.

5G mobile communication has been driven by the need to provide ubiquitous connectivity for applications as varied as automotive communications, remote control with haptic style feedback, large quantities of video downloads, as well as the very low data rate applications like remote sensors and the IoT.

5G will enable us to do things previously deemed impossible with a wireless connection, such as high-speed data transfers, which will revolutionize the way we communicate and interact; However, there is a downside to achieving high speeds with 5G.

Current limitations of 5G:

The catch of using higher frequencies, such as those used in 5G, is that they are short in range. So, for the same reason, a 5 gigahertz WIFI does not travel as far as a 3 gigahertz WIFI, 5G does not travel with a consistent speed output when it comes to range. This means that any obstructions that may hinder the range of a 5G router will make the strength of the signal fall; for example, trees, walls, and buildings block the high-frequency signals being emitted from the 5G router which in turn reduces its speed and capacity.

The solution to this glaring problem for the meantime would be installing routers in multiple locations and in close proximity to each other so that the signal drops are much less significant.

A lot of industries will benefit from 5G; For example, for an industry like music, 5G is really shaping up to be a game-changer. In these strange times, more and more artists are being confined within their homes, which limits them from collaborating with other artists.  5G solves this problem by allowing low latency data communication which can possibly allow live performances being broadcasted, while the artists collaborating operate from remote locations all at once. This would also allow a ghostwriter for songs juggling multiple projects at once to provide services at high speeds which have been impossible in the past.

5G promises us a world that is increasingly connected and secure, due to its high speeds and large data transfer capabilities. Considering the fact that 5G usage is growing at an exponential rate, it should not surprise anyone to find a 5G router being installed in their neighborhood in the near future.

For anyone still on the fence about whether they should invest in a 5G enabled phone or not due to how expensive 5G enabled phones were when they first came out, companies like Samsung, Google, Motorola, LG, and Huawei are all offering cheap alternatives to their high-end mobile phones that are also 5G enabled making 5G much more accessible than ever before to the average person.


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